Friday, May 11, 2012

Game #32: Marlins 6, Mets 5

Third base coach Joey Espada congratulates Marlins' Jose Reyes, who hits a triple off former teammate Johan Santana in the first inning. (
Well...turns out other teams can come back and win games too.

After taking the lead in the 8th, Frank Francisco and the Mets bullpen couldn't hold on against the Marlins, who rode a walk-off single by Greg Dobbs to a 6-5 victory.

The Bad Stuff:
  • This was the 8,000th game in New York Mets history, and with a Jose Reyes triple to lead off 1st inning, the 8,000th game the Mets have allowed at least one hit. At least they got that out of the way early. Three runs came in on Johan Santana in that 1st inning, Reyes coming home on an Omar Infante single and Austin Kearns homering home the rest.
  • Down 3-0 early, New York clawed its way back to take a 5-3 lead in the 8th (see Good Stuff for more), but Daniel Murphy grounded out with the bases loaded to leave a few more runs on the bases...
  • ...Runs the Mets would end up needing: Ike Davis committed a silly and rather costly error on a Reyes groundball in the 8th, and Jose flashed his famous speed to score on an Infante double soon after to make it 5-4.
  • After sitting down in order in the top of the 9th, Frank Francisco was 3 outs away from giving the Mets their 6th straight win and 12th of the come-from-behind variety. It was not to be: Giancarlo Stanton lashed a blistering double to the left center wall and scored on an Emilio Bonifacio single two batters later to tie the game. The speedy Bonifacio stole second and came home on Dobbs's single. Game over, comeback victory to the other guys tonight.
    • While he's 8/10 in save opportunities this season, Frank-Frank hasn't looked too good doing it: his ERA after tonight's trouncing ballooned to 6.59, reaching above even DJ Carrasco territory. With other guys like Bobby Parnell (who was hurt by Davis's error in the 8th) having good seasons thusfar, Francisco had best step up his game or suffer the fate of Heath Bell, his Miami counterpart, who lost the closer's job last week (although he seems to have taken it back by now).
The Good Stuff:
  • Santana settled down after the 1st inning, limiting the damage to just those 3 runs on 6 hits in 6 innings, walking no one and striking out 7. He threw only 82 pitches so he likely would've gotten another inning or two had he not been pinch-hit for.
  • Before surrendering the game's final 3 runs, the Mets tagged Miami pitching for 5 unanswered after falling behind early. Ike Davis hit a solo home run off Mark Buehrle in the 5th and Mike Nickeas doubled home a run in the 7th.
  • The 8th was when things got really good: David Wright led off with a double (he finished 3-5, continuing his blistering start) and went to third on a Lucas Duda groundout (Big Dude finished a decent 2-5). Kirk Nieuwenhuis came on to pinch hit and laced a double to right to score David. Tie ballgame. Ike Davis was walked intentionally and Ronny Cedeno drew a bases on balls of his own to load 'em for Mike Baxter. The Whitestone Kid continues to make a name as New York's best bat of the bench, poking a 2-run double over the shortstop's head, just like Keith Hernandez predicted, to make it 5-3. Baxter is now 6-15 this season pinch hitting.
Final Analysis:
The SNY guys had it right tonight: the Marlins gave the Mets a taste of their own medicine, coming back to win after surrendering a comeback of their own just an inning earlier. The L ends the Mets' 8,000th game on a disappointing note and kills their 5-game winning streak.

Tomorrow afternoon R.A. Dickey will look to put tonight behind his team and look to vanquish a foe who has won 9 of their last 10. It'll be a bounceback game for the Mets, the only question is whether they'll bounce like a superball or a dead cat. Let's hope they choose superball.


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